Letter to stakeholders

2016, 50th year of Sofidel: a valuable opportunity to reflect on our identity and to take a run-up into the future

2016 was the 50th year of Sofidel life.

A year marked by celebrations, lived as a moment of reflection and identity growth, and a renewed enthusiasm towards the future, put into effect with the implementation of important investments both in Europe and in the United States.

In many ways this represents a perfect synthesis of our history in which the anchor to specific values such as the attention to technological innovation, the pursuit of quality, the building of stable and long lasting relationships with stakeholders, along with investment horizons related to industrial logic and a constant, positive opening to the future, constituted growth factors.

The 50th Anniversary has been so a precious opportunity to affirm and fully promote the Sofidel identity. A choice that, summarized in the slogan “One company, one brand”, has led to emphasize the sense of belonging to a history and a universe of common values that make recognizable for ideas, guidelines, policies, styles and actions all the Sofidel realities present in the world.

The 50th Anniversary has been so a precious opportunity to affirm and fully promote the Sofidel identity

In this context it was decided to raise awareness to all stakeholders, both in Italy and outside Italy, about the history and the values of a company able to develop and grow continuously for five decades. A goal pursued by starting the celebrations at national level, with a press conference in Milan; supporting an event of the “Festival of Growth” in Lucca; celebrating employees with a party in all plants worldwide at the same time; supporting the production of a documentary “Paper, a never ending story” of the National Geographic presented in London and broadcasted in most European countries; activating a corporate campaign in major European newspapers; last but not least realizing a book about Sofidel history, the history of the paper industry of Lucca district and the culture of the tissue paper written by the University of Pisa.

All these activities were strenghten even by public international recognition including the visit to the headquarters Sofidel of the Prime Ministers of the Italian Republic, Matteo Renzi, and a mention by the President of the United States, Barack Obama, during an event dedicated to foreign investment in the United States.

US president Barack Obama referred to Sofidel in his speech at the SelectUsa investment summit

Watch the video Leggi

Together with this events, strictly linked to the roots of values ​​and the increase of recognizability and reputation of Sofidel brand, 2016 was also the year of another significant projection towards the future. The start of a new strategic growth phase (the fourth), which provides diversified paths of development for Europe and the United States. In the old continent, where now the dissemination of production facilities close to markets can be said to be substantially completed, the development of Sofidel will pass by organic growth: from the increase of the production capacity (in some cases doubled or even tripled) of existing plants to a possible, rare opportunistic acquisitions. In the US, however, where there is the dual need to increase production capacity and geographical coverage, and where wide margins for growth are expected, development will occur through replication of the strategy already successfully applied in Europe, namely through a mix of greenfield and acquisitions investments.

Among the main operations of the year are at least to remember, with regards to the production, the installation of a new modern production capacity in Poland (active in 2017); the acquisition of a business unit and the Forest brand in Hungary; the massive investments in technological innovation of converting lines ( Constellation Perini technology ) which will increase even more the quality of the product rolls; the start of construction work on the integrated plant in Circleville, Ohio, destined to become the most important US and the most modern of the entire Group.

Regarding the marketing activities it is worth to mention:

  • the decision to proceed with FSC certification for 100% of the consumer products sector in Italy, Great Britain, Spain, France and the Benelux;
  • the launch in Italy of sofidelshop.com, the first portal of e-commerce of the Group;
  • the Presentation on the US market of Sofidel brand for the AFH sector, Papernet;
  • the implementation of a number of stakeholder engagement activities, aimed at sharing common goals and build cooperative relations ever stronger with our fellow travelers. Among these we remember the “Sofidel Sustainability Suppliers Award” established to raise awareness and encourage our suppliers to take the way to sustainable development.

Based on these assumptions, it is possible to look ahead to the future with confidence and optimism. Aware that this passion towards tomorrow, translated also this year into attention to technological innovation, collaboration with stakeholders and further implementation of sustainability as a lever for competitive development, will fuel our balanced and sustainable growth pathway.

Something that yesterday, as today, is part of the Sofidel DNA.

In a world where the problems of overpopulation, the concern about the impacts of human activity on natural systems (climate, biodiversity …) and the research for new, more efficient social and economic balances are the new priorities, Sofidel wants to continue to guarantee prosperity for all its stakeholders through the creation of shared value: a company be able to deal with the question of “integral ecology” that rises from the contemporary world.

Well-known, to quote the famous words taken from “Letter to a Young Poet” by Rainer Maria Rilke, that ” the future enters us in this way in order to be transformed in us, long before it happens”.

Luigi Lazzareschi
CEO Sofidel Group

Emi Stefani
Chairman Sofidel Group

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